The Stravinsky Festival's first weekend (November 2-4) features the orchestra's first performance of Stravinsky's Chorale-Variations on Bach's Vom Himmel hoch da komm' ich her, followed by the Symphony of Psalms. The evening program concludes with Beethoven's Symphony No. 3.
The next weekend's program includes Haydn's Symphony No. 98, Shostakovich's Cello Concerto No. 1 (with soloist and principal cellist Eric Kim) and Stravinsky's Symphony in Three Movements.
"In essence, we have three pieces _ stylistically speaking, that have their roots in the Classical symphony," said orchestra music director Paavo J‹rvi. "Haydn's music is the basis of the symphony as we know it... Haydn laid the foundation to the symphonies that came after[wards ,] from Mozart, Beethoven, Brahms, Bruckner... In a 20th-century way, the Shostakovich Cello Concerto is also very Classical, and there is something very traditional about Stravinsky's Symphony in Three Movements... It is anything but small in its expression, but in the style and form the piece is written, the Symphony in Three Movements is very Classical."
Each festival concert is directly preceded by Classical Conservations, a one-hour discussion with Cincinnati Conservatory of Music composition professor Joel Hoffman and either J‹rvi or assistant conductor Eric Dudley.
Additionally, November 10's performance is followed by a reception in the Music Hall lobby capturing the feel of Stravinsky's time in Paris: live jazz by the Faux Frenchmen, drinks and desserts. The event is free for attendees of that evening's concert.
"There are few composers who come along in history and change the way people listen to music, the very soundscape," added J‹rvi. "Igor Stravinsky was one such composer."